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Groupon, Inc. (GRPN)

  • Thu, Jan. 15, 9:28 AM
    • Evercore's Ken Sena has upgraded Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) and YELP to Hold, and respectively set targets of $8 and $60.
    • Regarding Groupon (downgraded on Oct. 10, when shares were at $6.38), Sena sees positive trends going into the company's Feb. 12 Q4 report. "Specifically, minutes-per-user has inflected positive for the third consecutive quarter, reflecting a combination of product enhancements and seller initiatives. Factoring this engagement improvement, coupled with expected proceeds from a partial [Ticket Monster] sale, lead us to step to the sidelines on shares."
    • Sena's Yelp upgrade is partly a valuation call: Shares have fallen 10% below his $60 target. In addition, the company is seeing improving unique visitor growth (a recent concern), ad loads are showing "some signs of increase," and Evercore's survey work points to "continued seller reliance" on Yelp's platform.
    • Nonetheless, he maintains "some concerns with the business as seller commentary remained negative for 18 of the 43 business owners surveyed, reflecting concerns around review handling and ROI." New competitive efforts from Google, Facebook, and Groupon are also a concern.
    • YELP +1.9% premarket. GRPN +0.5%. In spite of recent market choppiness, Groupon remains up 24% from where it traded going into its Q3 report.
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  • Fri, Jan. 9, 12:43 PM
    • Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) will report Q4 results on Feb. 12.
    • The conference call is scheduled to begin at 5.00 p.m. ET.
    • Consensus view is revenues of $910.23M.
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  • Tue, Jan. 6, 2:18 PM
    • "Private equity firms both at home and abroad participated in the preliminary bidding" for the sale of a stake in Groupon's (GRPN -0.3%) Ticket Monster Korean deals site, BusinessKorea reports. A "preferred bidder" will reportedly be selected in a month, and a deal finalized within two months.
    • The site adds a 20%-51% stake is expected to be sold, and that Groupon will remain the largest shareholder. Ticket Monster rival Wemakeprice has officially expressed interest in buying a stake.
    • Groupon rallied two weeks ago on a report that Goldman is thinking of buying a stake in Ticket Monster, which Groupon has been seeking a partner for. Shares are near breakeven today in spite of a 1.5% Nasdaq drop.
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  • Dec. 26, 2014, 12:49 PM
    • The Korea Times reports Goldman is thinking of taking a stake in Groupon's (NASDAQ:GRPN) Korean Ticket Monster deals site, acquired from Living Social a year ago for $260M. The paper adds Groupon "wants to sell at least a 20 percent stake and is also considering handing over managerial control, selling over half of its stake."
    • Groupon stated in October it's exploring options for its Asian ops (Ticket Monster included), and that it could benefit from having a partner in some markets. However, the company added it's not looking to fully unload Ticket Monster.
    • CEO Eric Lefkofsky on the Q3 CC (transcript): "Right now, we’re in 47 countries and we can’t invest in every country at the level that we would like to at all time ... [Ticket Monster] is growing faster than we thought. [It's] certainly growing faster than it was when we acquired it ... it has the potential to be the leader in e-commerce in Korea and we’re very focused on the long-term."
    • Shares at their highest levels since March.
    | 1 Comment
  • Dec. 18, 2014, 12:37 PM
    • Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) is among the tech sector's top performers on a day the Nasdaq is up 1.5%. 21.3M shares (well above a 3-month daily average of 15.9M) have already changed hands.
    • The gains come a day after Leon Cooperman declared on CNBC Groupon is worth 40%-50% more than what it's trading for. 89.3M shares (21% of the float) were shorted as of Nov. 28.
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  • Dec. 17, 2014, 1:12 PM
    • Omega Advisors' Leon Cooperman just gave Groupon (GRPN +3.5%) a favorable mention on CNBC. Though stating the daily deals/e-commerce firm isn't a major holding, he nonetheless declared shares to be significantly undervalued.
    • Shares have popped in response. They had given back some of their big post-earnings gains in recent weeks.
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  • Dec. 2, 2014, 9:21 AM
    • From Black Friday through Cyber Monday, Groupon's (NASDAQ:GRPN) North American sales were up over 25% Y/Y. The company adds Black Friday and Cyber Monday "were the two biggest days in Groupon's North American history."
    • Promos for electronics and retail coupons contributed to the growth. For reference, Groupon's North American billings were up 16.4% Y/Y in Q3.
    • Yesterday: BofA/Merrill upgrades Groupon
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  • Dec. 1, 2014, 9:25 AM
    • Believing the company's "downward estimate revision cycle could be ending," BofA/Merrill's Paul Bieber has upgraded Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) to Buy, and hiked his target by $1.50 to $9.50.
    • Bieber touts Groupon's large customer base (it had 52.7M active customers in Q3), believes e-mail traffic pressures (caused in part by Google's addition of a Promotions tab to Gmail) are diminishing, and argues recent numbers point to stabilizing spending within cohort groups.
    • He also thinks Ticket Monster, for whom Groupon is seeking local partners, has seen its value grow in recent quarters.
    • Shares now +32% since Groupon's Oct. 30 Q3 report.
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  • Dec. 1, 2014, 9:13 AM
    | 1 Comment
  • Nov. 25, 2014, 2:00 PM
    • Twitter Offers allows advertisers to promote discounts for offline goods and services that can be added to a user's credit or debit card, and automatically redeemed when that card is used in a physical store.
    • Since the card-linking process takes place on Twitter's (TWTR -1%) site and apps, Twitter asserts advertisers will be able to precisely measure the ROI yielded by an Offers campaign. The company will be testing the solution with "a handful of brands" during the holiday season.
    • The solution leverages Twitter's July acquisition of CardSpring, which developed a platform very similar to Offers. In September, Twitter began testing a "Buy now" button that allows users to make e-commerce purchases without leaving its site/apps.
    • Offers represents fresh competition for Groupon's (GRPN +0.7%) local deals services. Facebook already provides an offline deals solution called Offers.
    | 1 Comment
  • Nov. 19, 2014, 5:28 PM
    • Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) director Daniel T. Henry discloses he bought 30K shares on Monday at $7.75.
    • The purchase followed a healthy rally seen in the wake of Groupon's Oct. 30 Q3 beat.
    | 1 Comment
  • Nov. 17, 2014, 6:18 PM
    • Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) has acquired Swarm Mobile, provider of a platform that (with the help of Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and infrared) tracks/analyzes a retail customer's in-store activity and helps retailers interact with them. Terms are undisclosed.
    • Groupon: "The more merchants understand about consumer shopping habits, the more customers benefit through specialized offers, tailored notifications and the opportunity to provide real-time feedback ... Swarm’s team will join our MOS organization in San Francisco and will continue to develop its product portfolio and partner roster, including integrations with a number of leading point-of-sale providers."
    • The daily daily leader has long envisioned itself morphing into an end-to-end provider of local commerce services for merchants; results have been mixed to date. Back in June, Groupon bought grocery coupon app developer SnapSaves.
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  • Nov. 11, 2014, 1:01 PM
    • Groupon (NASDAQ:GRPN) has used its 2014 analyst day to guide for 15%+ 2015 revenue growth (above a 13.7% consensus) and 25%+ adjusted EBITDA growth.
    • The company also says it's looking to achieve 20%+ revenue growth and 25% adjusted EBITDA growth by 2017.
    • Shares +28% since Groupon's Oct. 30 Q3 beat.
    • Analyst day slides (.pdf)
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  • Nov. 4, 2014, 3:40 PM
    • Heavily-shorted Groupon (GRPN +7%) is now up 33% since posting a Q3 beat and reporting better-than-expected North American billings growth on Thursday afternoon. Volume remains strong - 36.4M shares have changed hands today, more than 2x the 3-month average.
    • This morning, Groupon announced it's now selling (via Groupon Goods) private-label wine. The offering is said to be inspired by company mascot Groupon the Cat, and features offerings such as Top Cat Merlot and Jazzy Cat Pinot Noir; Groupon boasts the latter has "notes of vanilla from French and American oak."
    | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 31, 2014, 1:58 PM
    • "Management demonstrated this quarter that it could reaccelerate North America local billings, which should be viewed positively by investors," writes William Blair's Ralph Schack following Groupon's (GRPN +24.7%) Q3 beat. He adds the company's Nov. 11 analyst day could serve as a fresh catalyst.
    • Sterne Agee's Arvind Bhatia declares "execution improved and management delivered on all three of its Q4 targets a quarter early." He sees investors who had written off Groupon taking a second look.
    • Brean also notes Groupon's improved North American local performance, and declares its mobile metrics "continue to impress." Credit Suisse is more cautious: It's hiking its long-term gross profit and EBITDA forecasts, but also notes active customers fell by 700K Q/Q and expects "continued marketing and investment to drive Marketplaces awareness" to pressure near-term profits.
    • 22% of the float was shorted as of Oct. 15, providing plenty of fuel for a squeeze.
    • Prior earnings coverage
  • Oct. 31, 2014, 12:47 PM
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Company Description
Groupon Inc provides a local e-commerce marketplace that connects merchants to consumers by offering goods and services at discount. The Company features a daily deal on stuff to do, see, eat, and buy.